ADASS: Delayed transfer of care figures show need to support people at home

Directors of adult services warns that statistics show importance of investing to support people at home

Published on 15th May 2019

The number of delayed transfer of care beds fell in March 2019 from the previous month, according to the latest figures.

However, the statistics reveal that the total number of days delayed increased between February and March 2019.

Julie Ogley, President of the Association of Directors of Adult Social Services, said: “These figures demonstrate the importance of investing in social care primary and community services and the need to focus more on supporting people at home."

There were 138,800 total days delayed in March 2019 of which 90,200 were in acute care, compared to 127,281 in February. However, this is a decrease year on year from March 2018, where there were 154,500 total delayed days, of which 102,400 were in acute care.

The 138,800 total delayed days in March 2019 is equivalent to 4,478 daily DTOC beds which compares to 4,545 the previous month in February and compares to 4,984 in March 2018.

While 61.9% of all delays in March 2019 were attributable to the NHS, 28.9% were attributable to social care and the remaining 9.2% were attributable to both NHS and social care.

The main reason for NHS delays in March 2019 was “Patients Awaiting further Non Acute NHS Care,” which accounted for 26,400 delayed days (30.8% of all NHS delays). The main reason for social care delays in March 2019 was “Patients Awaiting Care Package in their Own Home,” which accounted for 13,200 delayed days (33.0% of all social care delays).

Julie Ogley of ADASS added: "Despite continuing reductions in Delayed Transfers of Care attributable to social care, hospitals are still struggling with greater numbers of people having to be admitted."

"This in turn leads to increasing demand for support for people when they get home. Those who would be entitled to receive care services at home will suffer as a result of needlessly staying in hospital for longer than necessary, unless a modest investment in adult social care is made in order to deliver positive results.

"For example, an investment of £1 billion could help about 50,000 older and disabled people to stay healthy and at home by investing in a mixture of services including home care support, specialist residential capacity and social work assessments," she concluded.

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